For the most part, the furnace does its job adequately and thus, flies under the radar. Because ‘old reliable’ fires up usually without any fanfare every winter, it’s easy to fall into the temptation of foregoing the recommended HVAC inspection. After all, you change your filters regularly and don’t hear any awkward clanging so the furnace should be good to go for another heating season.
What almost always happens is that one skipped annual inspection turns into two which inevitably turns into ten. The poor furnace, which had kept you warm through numerous family get-togethers, eventually succumbs to the lack of attention and dies or requires extensive emergency furnace repairs. There are real dangers in avoiding even one annual HVAC inspection and here’s the proof:
Temperature Control Failure
Temperature controls are designed to control how much heat is output by the furnace. Obviously if the control fails there is no self-limitation on the unit to prevent itself from overheating and essentially burning up. Granted there are safety triggers in place to prevent overheating as most modern furnaces do not turn on if it detects a fault. Still in an older heater or with a temperature control failure combined with a bad safety shut off emergency furnace repair is a necessity or things could get dangerous.
A clogged exhaust can be another two-fold safety issue. First off a clogged exhaust doesn’t allow dangerous gas to escape the house and since it has to go somewhere it fills up the utility room and then spreads from there. Second the exhaust helps the furnace recycle and depressurize so when it becomes clogged the components inside start to experience buildup, which could damage the furnace. What makes it worse is that clearing a clogged exhaust is normally a simple task of removing the blockage.
Safety Pressure Control Failure
Forced air systems are under a considerable amount of pressure as required to cycle air and push it through home. Like many components in the furnace, a safety pressure control is designed to limit the furnace from harming itself. When the pressure becomes too high, the safety switch will shut the system down until service can be performed. When that switch fails high pressure could force the furnace into a bomb of sorts and emergency furnace repairs are needed imminently.
Newer furnaces don’t rely on the traditional pilot light as they instead feature electronic ignition systems. The electronic ignition saves energy by not having a constant pilot light burning but when the ignition starts to malfunction it could repeatedly open up gas lines and create a spark even when the furnace is already running. Not only is an ignition malfunction an energy drain, it is also a safety hazard.
Flame Roll-Out Safety Malfunction
Gas furnaces rely on a delicate balance of the right amount of fuel and air to function properly. Over time, the metal balancing components start to wear out and corrode. Blockages such as soot prevent the excess gas of the flames from traveling out the exhaust. When these gases remain there is a flame roll out possibility that can singe wires and components or start a fire in the utility room. An HVAC inspection can identify signs of corroded parts to prevent this damaging event from happening and from your home requiring emergency furnace repair in the dead of winter.